The multi tasking hoax

Multi-tasking is a hoax. In fact it’s one of the worst developments associated with the personal computer revolution. It robs us of time, reduces focus, and has a negative impact on reaching deadlines adn getting stuff done. So here is my top 10 list of ways to avoid the multi-tasking hoax:

  1. Only have one computer application open at a time
  2. Only check your emails at 2 designated times of the day (say 9am and 3pm)
  3. Don’t write long to do lists (guilty). Instead write down the answer to this question: ‘The one thing I must finish today’
  4. Close your eyes while taking phone calls to ensure you listen to the other party.
  5. Learn to say ‘no’. Tell the other person why, you can’t do it, or offer for them to pick something to drop off.
  6. Meditate daily. Think about long term goals
  7. Focus on depth of activities, not number of activities completed. Do less things, better.
  8. Never tell anyone you are busy. We are all busy. It leads to pin balling around stuff instead of finishing.
  9. have defined goals for the year. Ask yourself each morning how your are moving towards them.
  10. Add your item for number 10 in the comments.

Startup Blog says: Multitasking is your enemy. Avoid it.

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13 comments

  1. Janet Hopkins · July 31, 2010

    When driving or en-route switch off the phone and the iPad.

  2. Janet · July 31, 2010

    I am putting this list on my desk at work first thing Monday morning. Andgoing home now to meditate about my long term goals. Thanks

  3. Mathew Heggem · July 31, 2010

    #10… or 11… Stay focused on the present. Be here, now, deeply listening to the moment at hand rather than worrying about all the things that you think need to get done today, tomorrow, this year, etc. Ask yourself ‘what am I doing right now, this moment, and how can I do it the best that I can – and find enjoyment in this very moment?’

    • Steve Sammartino · July 31, 2010

      I really like the idea of enjoying every moment. Living in the now, is a real key to happiness.

      Steve.

  4. Tim Roso · July 31, 2010

    Seems very Good Weekend-esque Steve…

    • Steve Sammartino · July 31, 2010

      Mate, you’re onto it – that was where the inspiration came from, mind you my views are not nearly as extreme.
      Steve.

      • Tim Roso · July 31, 2010

        Still talking to your wife over dinner then?

        Probably for the best. :)

  5. John Calabro · July 31, 2010

    I’ve always liked the idea of getting some perspective – When things get too much ask yourself: ‘in five years, will any of this matter?’

  6. Megan · July 31, 2010

    Ask yourself “what are the consequences if I don’t do this?”. Then ask yourself whether you can live with them.

  7. faithsuzzette · July 31, 2010

    Log into Facebook only in the evening… I can never get out once I’m in!
    By the way, congrats on getting Freshly Pressed.

  8. Sunny · July 31, 2010

    ahhhh, after that last post I read that whole list in the Old Spice Man voice.

    My number 10 would be something along the lines of always include all information. My boss has this nasty habit of asking me something along the lines of, “did you get this email from this person at x brand” me… brainmush deep into something for c brand.. “uhhhh” boss, “bloody hell sunny you dont know what you’re doing” 9 times out of 10 I either never received the email it was only sent to him or it was from over 8 weeks ago and saved and deleted from my inbox loonngg ago. His favourite word is “thing” as well.. drives me mad! so STOP think about what you’re going to say, who its about and include as much information as you can! And try not to rush people!

  9. rangafella · July 31, 2010

    #10 Take a break every now and then. :)

  10. Cailín · July 31, 2010

    Get up a little earlier so you don’t have run around like a chicken with your head off to get out the door. Nothing worse than coming into the office already frazzled.

    Plug in the iPod (don’t listen to the news … talk about a buzz kill) and enjoy the ride in.

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